The most important pillar of Athletic Club’s success is their youth academy, Lezama. While other clubs spend summers signing big names to their first team squads, most of Athletic’s moves come by adding young talent from the Basque Country. Even more important than finding new young footballers is retaining the talent that is already in house. Ruben Azcona is one of the most prolific goal scorers in Lezama history and the club has officially moved to secure his future in Bilbao.
According to a new report from El Desmarque Bizkaia, Azcona has signed a new three year contract with Athletic Club that will see him finish his formative years at Lezama. The 16-year-old is expected to continue climbing the youth ranks and will remain with his boyhood club for the foreseeable future.
Last year the young striker shattered the Lezama Cadet scoring record by netting 51 goals. The previous mark was set at 38 by Isma Lopez back in the 2008-2009 season. Well-known players like Iñaki Williams and Asier Villalibre did not even reach this mark at that age, although Inigo Vicente was on track to break the record before being called up to a higher level of football. Fans have a lot of reasons to be excited about Azcona and his renewal definitely makes the future even more encouraging.
It should still be noted that Azcona is just 16 years old and has a lot of growing and developing left to do. Anyone expecting him to become a first team star anytime soon is adding unnecessary burdens and expectations on the shoulders of a teenager. The striker is certainly an exciting prospect, but the most important thing for him right now is to continue enjoying football and improving his game. The future is bright, but must also be kept in perspective.